Marotiri School - 15/02/2017

1 Context

Marotiri School is a rural primary school located 36 kilometres northwest of Taupo and caters for students in Years 1 to 8. It has a roll of 123 including 19 students who identify as Māori. The newly elected board of trustees includes new and experienced members.

2 Equity and excellence

The vision and valued outcomes defined by the school for all children are to equip them with the attitudes, skills and knowledge necessary for the 21st Century. Their values and virtues include innovation, independence, cultural sensitivity, and to show empathy and determination.

The school’s achievement information shows that between 2013 and 2015 there has been a fluctuating pattern of attainment for Māori and other children in reading, writing and mathematics. Achievement data for 2015 shows that approximately 75% of Māori children achieved National Standards in reading, 67% for writing and 60% for mathematics. School-wide approximately three quarters of the children are achieving at or above National Standards in reading and mathematics, and slightly more in writing.

The school uses a wide range of assement tools to assist teachers to make overall teacher judgements in relation to National Standards. From this information school-wide targets were developed to accelerate the rate of progress of all children at risk of not achieving National Standards.

Since the last ERO evaluation the school has experienced significant staff changes, addressed non- classroom space deficiences and built a new administration building. The school has introduced accelerated writing in the two junior classrooms and participated in specific mathematics and writing professional development. Teacher-based inquiry as well as learning inquiry has been introduced for teachers and children.

Marotiri School is a member of the Taupo Community of Learning which involves a number of local schools working together on common challenges to raise student achievement.

3 Accelerating achievement

How effectively does this school respond to Māori children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school has yet to respond effectively to all Māori children whose learning and achievement needs acceleration. Leaders and teachers in Term 4 2016 have developed Māori achievement folders that identify individual Māori learners in order to provide interventions and appropriate learning programmes.

While the school has developed specific targets for students who are at risk of not achieving, they have yet to develop targets for their Māori students in the annual plan.

Staff have established positive and respectful relationships with the parents and whānau of Māori children.

How effectively does this school respond to other children whose learning and achievement need acceleration?

The school responds well to most of the other students whose learning and achievement need acceleration. The school has a variety of support programmes and initiatives to accelerate children's progress and achievement. School achievement information indicates that some children experience accelerated progress particularly in writing and mathematics.

4 School conditions

How effectively do the school’s curriculum and other organisational processes and practices develop and enact the school’s vision, values, goals and targets for equity and excellence?

The school curriculum and other organisational processes and practices are focused on developing and enacting the school's vision, values, goals and targets for equity and excellence. These are yet to be fully effective in all aspects.

The school curriculum is reflective of The New Zealand Curriculum and responds well to children's learning needs and interests in a local context. Literacy and mathematics are well embedded. Children have opportunities to be involved in a wide range of learning experiences. Teachers now need to strengthen the natural integration of Māori language, culture and identity in classroom programmes.

Children requiring extra support with their learning are well catered for in a variety of ways. Interventions include Reading Recovery, individualised learning programmes, teacher aide support, and support from external agencies. Experienced classroom teachers work effectively with individuals and groups of targeted children.

Teachers have high expectations for children's learning and behaviour. They use achievement information to identify the needs and strengths of children especially those children whose learning requires acceleration. Teachers establish positive, caring relationships with children and their whānau, and support them in their learning and wellbeing. Children learn in rich and stimulating learning environments and their work is acknowledged and celebrated. Classroom activities are designed to enhance engagement in learning. Teachers need to increase the opportunities for students to take more responsibility for their own learning.

Self review by the principal, staff and trustees informs planning and decisions at board and classroom levels. Teachers are involved in ongoing professional development using both internal and external expertise. Children are benefitting from teachers when they are reviewing and reflecting on their practices to better respond to children's interests and strengths.

The experienced principal is committed to providing equity and excllence. She is actively involved in the Taupo Community of Learning and is focused on improving student achievement and well being. The deputy principal models effective teaching and works closely with the principal to lead learning across the school. Led by the principal, the school community has developed a vision and valued competencies that are highly evident. These competencies contribute to the focused and settled school environment that promotes positive learning outcomes for all children.

The board chairperson is providing effective support and leadership for the relatively new board. Trustees bring a range of useful knowledge and skills to support school leaders and plan school direction. They have undertaken training and are developing expectations around their roles and responsibilities. The board regularly receives student achievement information in relation to National Standards and use this information to set targets and make appropriate resourcing decisions.

There is a high level of parent involvement in community events and school initiatives. Partnerships with parents provide opportunities for the sharing of information about children's learning, achievements and challenges. These include including Māori children and children needing additional support with their learning.

Educationally powerful connections are developing through the Taupo Community of Learning and are promoting cohesive and shared expectations in aspects of teaching practices and the curriculum.

5 Going forward

How well placed is the school to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it?

Leaders and teachers:

  • know the children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated
  • respond to the strengths, needs and interests of each child
  • regularly evaluate how teaching is working for these children
  • need to systematically act on what they know works for each child
  • need to have a plan in place to build teacher capability to accelerate the achievement of all children who need it.

Strengths of the school include:

  • senior leaders and teachers are focused on raising achievement for children with identified learning needs
  • the school's use of achievement information to develop goals and strategies that address identified needs of individual children
  • teachers with high expectations of children's learning and behaviour
  • a curriculum that is responsive to the diverse learning needs of children.

Next steps:

  • develop specific and measurable achievement targets for Māori children
  • strengthen the integration of Māori language, culture and identity in the curriculum and classroom programmes
  • improve moderation practices in regard to judgements about children's achievement in relation to National Standards
  • provide more specific monitoring of children's progress and achievement at classroom level
  • promote more opportunities for children to take ownership of their learning.

Action: The board, principal and teachers should use the findings of this evaluation, the Effective School Evaluation resource, the Internal Evaluation: Good Practice exemplars and the School Evaluation Indicators to develop more targeted planning to accelerate student achievement. Planning should show how processes and practices will respond effectively to the strengths and needs of children whose learning and achievement need to be accelerated.

As part of this review ERO will continue to monitor the school’s planning and the progress the school makes. ERO is likely to carry out the next full review in three years.

6 Board assurance on legal requirements

Before the review the board of trustees and principal of the school completed the ERO board assurance statement and Self Audit Checklists. In these documents they attested that they had taken all reasonable steps to meet their legislative obligations related to the following:

  • board administration

  • curriculum

  • management of health, safety and welfare

  • personnel management

  • asset management.

During the review, ERO checked the following items because they have a potentially high impact on student safety and wellbeing:

  • emotional safety of students (including prevention of bullying and sexual harassment)

  • physical safety of students

  • teacher registration

  • processes for appointing staff

  • stand down, suspensions, expulsions and exclusions

  • attendance

  • compliance with the provisions of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

In order to improve current practice, trustees should:

  • develop and implement an effective system of regular appraisal for all teachers and teacher aides in order to strengthen staff skills and knowledge.

7 Recommendations

ERO recommends that the school strengthens aspects of professional leadership to:

  • establish a more positive and collaborative team culture
  • continue to build teacher capability
  • develop shared and agreed expectations for learning and teaching
  • ensure that the performance management system is a constructive process and operates regularly.

Lynda Pura-Watson

Deputy Chief Review Officer Waikato/Bay of Plenty

15 February 2017

About the school 

Location

Marotiri, Waikato

Ministry of Education profile number

1808

School type

Full Primary (Years 1 to 8)

School roll

123

Gender composition

Boys 51% Girls 49%

Ethnic composition

Māori

Pākehā

Other

16%

77%

7%

Review team on site

October 2016

Date of this report

15 February 2017

Most recent ERO report(s)

Education Review

Education Review

Education Review

May 2012

March 2009

December 2005